General Election 2017

17 May 2017

There’s a lot of information available to help voluntary & community groups ensure that they comply with the Lobbying Act, the legal framework for charity campaigning, in the run up to the general election on Thursday, 8 June 2017. To assist local groups with understanding and navigating the process, as well as to find key information relevant to the election and what’s going on in your constituency, we’ve compiled a list of sources and links to local details regarding candidates and important dates.

Guidance on Campaigning

The Guardian has produced an article on what charities need to know about campaigning in the 2017 general election. It clarifies that most charities can campaign in the run-up to the election, but need to be aware of rules about donations, hustings and canvassing.

ACEVO’s Speaking frankly, acting boldly report outlines some of the recent threats to charity campaigning, and reminds us of the successes campaigning has achieved. It is a rallying cry to encourage charities to speak out on behalf of their beneficiaries. The report discusses the role of campaigning in the history and philosophy of charity, before going on to outline the public benefit which such activity creates. Finally, it examines the current campaigning climate.

The Charity Commission’s Charities, Elections and Referendums Guidance is for use by charities during the period between the announcement of an election and the date on which an election is held. This brief guidance should be read in conjunction with the Charity Commission’s more detailed guidance on the wider subject of Speaking Out: Guidance on campaigning and political activities by charities (CC9), which discusses what charities need to consider when campaigning or engaging in political activity. The principles described in CC9 continue to apply during an election period. The Charity Commission’s guidance divides campaigning into two categories: non-political campaigning that raises awareness about an issue and political campaigning that aims to change legislation or policy.

The Electoral Commission's Charities and Campaigning document is for charities that are thinking of campaigning in the run up to an election and who would like to understand the interaction between charity and election law.

NAVCA's Election Guidance was written for the 2015 election to help members understand the Lobbying Act and allow NAVCA members to consider how it affects them and how it effects organisations they support and advise. This legislation should not be a deterrent to continuing to speak out for the people you represent.

NCVO’s General Election 2017 provides guidance on how to campaign and speak up while staying within the rules. NCVO has also expressed its views on what the sector should be doing in the lead up to the general election.


For more information about who has been nominated to run in your constituency, please click on the relevant link:

If you’re not sure what constituency you live in, please use the Constituency Finder.

Key Dates

Monday 22 May
Last date to register to vote

Thursday 8 June
Polling stations open for the election from 7:00 am to 10:00 pm